By Ryan Murken
Your Prep Sports
IOWA CITY – Regina faced its toughest test of the young season on Wednesday against Class 3A No. 13 Davenport Central.
Kieler Brown and Mason Welter made sure Regina aced that test.
Brown and Welter each scored a pair of goals as 1A second-ranked Regina remained unbeaten with a 4-2 win over the Blue Devils at Regal Field.
“I think that this was definitely our best game so far,” Welter said. “We played a lot better together this game than we have in the past, we were able to control it well and we talked well the entire game.”
Regina improved to 3-0 with the win that avenged a 2-1 loss to Davenport Central last season.
The Blue Devils had a three-match winning streak snapped and dropped to 6-2 on the season with its first loss since a 4-1 loss to 3A No. 12 Ankeny Centennial on April 1.
“There is no question about it this is a good team, they are 6-1 right now and they are always solid but I think this is one of their better teams,” Regina coach Rick Larew said. “I was just very pleased with how we handled it because they are a better team than they were a year ago when they beat us.”
Regina controlled possession early and broke through when Brown knocked in a Leonardo Gasparoni corner kick in the 14th minute.
Gasparoni sent the ball through the box untouched toward the back post where Brown leapt to get a foot on the ball and redirect it into the corner of the goal.
“The cross came and it went through three or four guys, there was a guy marking me start and he was just gone,” Brown said. “I was right there to put it in.”
Regina put the match out of reach with a pair of goals two minutes apart late in the first half.
Welter put Regina up 2-0 with his first goal of the match in the 33rd minute.
“On defense they were struggling to keep possession so I just kept the pressure up,” Welter said. “He took a bad touch and I was able to capitalize and put it in the goal.”
Two minutes later Brown struck again to put the Regals up 3-0.
Davenport Central keeper Damien Burtle couldn’t handle a Regina free kick cleanly and Brown was there to put away the rebound.
“We came into this game really wanting to win because it’s a big start to our season,” Brown said. “Getting those first few goals against a team like this is really big.”
Davenport Central cut the lead to 3-1 when Dario Gonzalez scored on a penalty kick in the 54th minute but Regina had the answer.
Welter scored his second goal when he headed in a Nicholas Pechous cross in the 58th minute to put Regina up 4-1.
“Nick Pechous made a nice move to the outside and once he got out there he made a nice cross in and I was able to head it in,” Welter said. “You just have to focus on making sure you hit it and try to make it go wherever the goalie is not.”
Davenport Central added a goal in the final minute but it didn’t take away from what was the best performance to date for Regina.
“We wanted to possess the ball, work the ball up, play good solid aggressive defense and I think we did all those things,” Larew said. “I am very, very pleased with where we are at.”